Greek Watergate: why a journalist and a politician were followed

The resignation of Grigoris Dimitriadis, chief of staff of the office of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, his nephew and most loyal ally, and immediately after the resignation of the commander of the National Security Service, Panagiotis Kontoleon, can be compared with a thunderbolt, and what is happening clearly showed that “there is something much more.”

And what is probably now some people from the same foreign intelligence services, according to the head of ΕΥΠ, “holding the hand” of Prime Minister Mitsotakis himself. At the same time, the prime minister is in an extremely difficult political position, since it is he who is responsible for the activities of the National Security Service and its actions based on a presidential decree issued on July 8, 2019, just a day after the election, which was won by ND.

This was the first thing Kyriakos Mitsotakis did when he became prime minister. Because G. Dimitriadis, although formally in charge of ΕΥΠ, nevertheless kept aloof from the communication noise caused by the confession of the head of ΕΥΠ Panagiotis Kontoleon to the competent parliamentary committee on surveillance of N. Androulakis and T. Koukakis.

Significantly, in his confession, Mr. Contoleon referred to the prosecutor’s permission for this wiretapping, meaning that he acknowledged the existence of “legitimate” but nonetheless unconstitutional activities.

At the same time, the surveillance carried out by ΕΥΠ can be attributed to “an order (persistent request) from foreign intelligence services”, at least as far as T. Koukakis (a journalist involved in financial investigations) is concerned. Although initially the National Security Service and government spokesman G. Ikonom were told that “he was followed with the help of the Predator software … by private individuals” (!).

But the bottom line is that someone was being followed without the specific need to investigate possible criminal activity. And this is possible in the case of a case of either national importance or common criminal law. Because if it was, they would have to say so. But there is something else that raises questions: the phrase “legal justification for tapping the phone of PASOK/KINAL leader Nikos Androulakis.”

What does “legal justification” mean? It turns out that surveillance was carried out with the permission of a competent prosecutor? This was stated by the press secretary of the government G. Iconom. When asked to comment on this issue, he first stated that the surveillance of the journalist was carried out by private individuals, and then, when it became known about surveillance by ΕΥΠhe revised his opinion, saying that “the government could not have known because it would be problematic”, adding that the burden of deciding and documenting lies with the prosecutor working with ΕΥΠ! Does this mean that the prosecutor signed and approved the surveillance of N. Andrulakis and T. Kukakis?

The question arises: “On what grounds was the decision on surveillance made?” Exactly the same question arises with T. Koukakis: “Was he suspected of anti-national actions or ordinary crimes”? Because the prosecutor has no other excuse to sign a permit to spy on someone. Especially in relation to the activities of such a structure as the National Security Service. After all, if there are such reasons, citizens should know about it. Otherwise, the prosecutor himself should be checked.

And since the information is coming in, but there is no confirmation yet, we will ask the question: “What role does a very important economic factor play in this whole performance? And how does all this relate to the information that Maxim had that this factor” advised “N. Andrulakis ” not accept Mitsotakis’ offer to support the first party “in the event of elections in September”? The briefing that eventually led to the decision… to postpone the election! Then the investigative journalist was informed that his conversation with N. Andrulakis became known to government agencies, after which threats rained down on him…

In the case of surveillance of T. Koukakis, there is an even more mysterious question: what foreign intelligence services and why do they need surveillance of a financial journalist, and his international contacts and correspondents? And how “frivolously” did the prosecutor sign the permit for surveillance?

Recall that in the case of T. Koukakis, by order of the head of the Athenian prosecutor’s office, Sotiria Papageorgopoulou, a preliminary investigation has been underway since April last year in order to establish whether a criminal act was committed related to the violation of the secrecy of telephone communications, and by whom it was committed. Now, after the recognition of P. Kontoleon in the parliamentary committee, the question of the person or persons responsible for the criminal act does not arise. What, of course, played a role in the resignation of G. Dimitriadis and P. Kontoleon …

For reference.

Thanasis Koukakis – Journalist and columnist dealing with economic, banking and financial issues for over 22 years. He has worked for ESTIA and as head of financial reporting, and has also collaborated with TA NEA and TO VIMA. He is a frequent guest on international TV channels, collaborated with CNBC and Al Jazeera International.

Grigoris Dimitriadis – The 43-year-old British-trained lawyer and nephew of the Prime Minister as he is the son of Katerina Mitsotakis and lawyer Spyros Dimitriadis. Grigoris was a beloved grandson Konstantinos Mitsotakis and for many years was one of the closest associates Kyriakos Mitsotakis. He owns a law firm in Kolonaki specializing in corporate and commercial law.

Grigoris Dimitriadis became an associate and one of the first partners of Kyriakos Mitsotakis in 2004, when he ran for parliament for the first time along with Thanasis Nesis and Elpidophoros Papanikolopoulos. He remained by his side during the administrative reform as a special adviser. Grigoris Dimitriadis was alongside Kyriakos Mitsotakis in the New Democracy leadership campaign and essentially ran Mitsotakis’s office.

PS At the level of rumors, there is information that we are talking about the amount in 57 billionallocated by the European Commission to support the Greek economy during the coronavirus period. Apparently, foreign special services have evidence of misappropriation of funds, and the above-mentioned investigative journalist T.Kukakis was also looking for them (evidence).

As for the role of N. Androulakis, it is quite possible that Grigoris Dimitriadis, as a loyal associate of Kyriakos Mitsotakis, gave the task to ΕΥΠ to establish surveillance of a political opponent in order to find out what kind of compromising evidence Androulakis has against Mitsotakis (with a hint of the above topic), and that of this can be used on the eve of the election.

In any case, this remains at the level of rumors and may never become public knowledge. Unless, of course, the new prime minister decides to make it public (which is very possible if Tsipras returns).

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